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Network Design Tutorial

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  • Network Design Tutorial

    Can someone please explain to me briefly some confusions I have over Cisco networks design technology, different products & terminologies used and in general, switching & routing concepts in a corporate IT environment. Just think of me as a newbie in networking
    I will just ask a few questions at first, so that I do not confuse myself & others. maybe the rest after I get a hang of the subject.

    What is a Core switch? An Edge switch? Distribution switch or Access switch?
    Is an Edge switch the same as Distribution switch? I understand Cisco has a proprietary 3-tier architecture for these kind of network designs. But still confused as whole on this subject.
    What do you actually mean by a Core/Edge design in a switched network? Why is it preferred over a traditional cisco switched design? Is it only used for the reasons of scalability & better management?

    Thanks in advance.

  • #2
    Re: Network Design Tutorial

    A core switch sits at the core of your network. basically, you'd have a layered design,

    for instance, you might have a network consisting of 4 floors in a building. each of these floors would have siwtches, which lead back to the core switch, with whatever redundancy you want in between.

    to put it more in context, a distribution switch would be on each floor of the building, it has computers directly connected.

    so now, you've gotr 25 computers on the first floor, plugged into a distribution switch, same on the second floor etc. These switches tie back into the Core switch.

    Edge switch, I'm not so sure - I think of edge more in terms of firewall technology.

    you should be able to find heaps more information in this - i've only got a very basic idea.

    basically, even using the 3-tier architecture, it's still switching technology. 3-tier architecture is more just a way of effectively developing the network for redundancy and controlling traffic etc

    i think backplanes come into it a bit as well - rather than having 100 computer on a single backplane, it spreads the load over more
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    • #3
      Re: Network Design Tutorial

      Thanks tehcamel.
      Can we have some more input on the topic from other members as well. I would like to read as much possible on the topic. Thanks.


      • #4
        Re: Network Design Tutorial

        Unfortunately I don't have time right now to investigate further for you, but perhaps you could try finding your answers on Wendell Odom's blog?